Cottonwood Canyon State Park plan moving forward

The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission approved the  final draft plan for Cottonwood Canyon State Park in July 20, 2011. Here’s the file:

Here’s where we are in the guesstimated timeline for next steps:

  1. April 25 – May 5 >>  Last Round Public Meetings DONE
  2. May 26 >> Comment Period Closed DONE
  3. July 20 >> Final Draft Submitted for Commission Review
  4. Fall 2011 >> Land Use Approval Process
  5. Fall 2011 >> Environmental Assessment work with BLM initiated
  6. Spring – Summer 2012 >> Construction
  7. Park Opening >> September 2013

6 thoughts on “Cottonwood Canyon State Park plan moving forward

  1. In the Hermiston Herald dated july 12, 2011 the front page story is that the State Police can only supply 3 officers to Umatilla County, where they are supposed to employ 8 officers, due to budget cuts and lack of revenue. AND YET… Oregon still has the funds to develop another state park, even though THEIR budget does not allow them to fully care for the lands they hold now… a park that is so out of the way, desolate and hazardous to travel to, that in a few years, few will visit. But wait, there’s more! How about the cost to Gilliam and Sherman counties in lost property taxes, visiting idiots to protect, losses to the neighbors, etc… AND, lets not forget how the budgets to our schools have been cut so deep that teachers are being laid off all over the state. I guess education in a park kiosk is more important than in a classroom. What a waste of State money! But, hey… you can always raise my taxes some more… I still have a business, even though we can’t afford any employees, anymore.
    Signed – Bitter in Olex, Gilliam County, Oregon

    1. We understand you oppose the park. Choosing to spend the state parks budget in a different way (or reducing our budget even more) will not, however, provide more money for those other worthwhile programs. Oregonians — those who live in the Condon/Wasco/Moro area and those who live in other places — have placed on us the obligation to manage the state park system. We do that by balancing our spending to run existing parks and create new ones where we can. This park is about a half hour from Interstate 84, and while the acreage is large, the facilities are very modest, and we expect the number of visitors will likewise be modest. That’s the cost-wise decision that provides the best park for the money. Thanks to support from our neighbors and the business community — and they are the ones who will benefit the most from this park, both as a place they will use and as a source of tourism — Cottonwood Canyon is off to a good start.


  2. Super, It’s always a plus to add a new Star to Oregon’s constellation of State Parks. Each new park may not address everyones needs and wants but if it takes pressure off the other parks in the system it does the job. It will be a treat to visit in 2013 -2014. But even more thrilling to see it as it matures with plantings and improvements. Keep up the good work and please do whatever it takes to eradicate the need for reservations. Those who can’t always lock in dates need the ability to enjoy the best of Oregons Parks like anyone else.

    1. I would hope that there would be reservable sites at Cottonwood, and some first come first served sites. Folks with horses, and those of us who live a fair distance away, would probable be hesitant to use the park, if we didn’t have a site reserved and waiting for us. Some of us are unable to just “pack up and leave”. Those of us who have to lock in dates due to jobs and family commitments need to be able to enjoy the best of Oregon’s Parks like anyone else.

  3. Karen, some folks can understand your frustration, but most of your concerns are misdirected.
    OPRD is fully funded by user fees and lottery dollars. Your tax money is not used. OPRD gets no revenue from Oregon’s general fund.
    Please educate yourself before ranting about lost educational dollars being off-set by park development. It makes you look silly.

    1. Not just silly, but uneducated as how our state finances are used. I really don’t appreciate being called a “visiting idiot”. The fact that the park is out of the way is what makes it so attractive to many of us. I guess that you have never just stopped, sat perfectly still, and watched the desert come alive around you. You sound like a very unhappy person Karen, maybe a few days away from the daily grind, would help you get a better perception of what’s going on around you. Maybe a short, quiet walk in he desert. Just a suggestion.

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